glass cleaner bottle

10 Things You Should Never Clean With Windex

For decades many of us have been taught to clean glass and other household items with Windex.

However, not all surfaces are created equal, and using the wrong cleaning products can lead to unsightly damage or lackluster finish.

One common mistake is using Windex, a popular glass cleaner, on surfaces it’s not suitable for.  In this blog post I will highlight 10 things you should never clean with Windex to ensure longevity and beauty of your belongings.


leather couch


  Leather goods, such as furniture, shoes, and accessories, require special care. Windex can strip away the natural oils from the leather, leading to cracking and fading. Opt for a leather-specific cleaner and conditioner to maintain the softness and durability of your leather items.  


shower glass

Shower Doors

While Windex might seem like a quick fix for water spots on shower doors, it can leave behind streaks and residue. Over time, this can make your shower doors look even worse. Instead, use a bathroom cleaner designed for tackling soap scum and hard water stains.  Try Mr. Clean Magic Eraser and/or vinegar to remove buildup.


Plexiglass is a delicate material commonly used for windows, picture frames, and protective barriers. Windex contains ammonia, which can cause plexiglass to become cloudy, scratched, or discolored. Use a mild soap and water solution for this type of surface.  Try using an ammonia-free Glass Cleaner instead.

stainless steel appliances

Stainless Steel

 Stainless steel appliances and surfaces are prone to fingerprint smudges and streaks. However, using Windex can lead to streaking and an uneven appearance. Choose a stainless steel cleaner to maintain the sleek and polished look without the risk of damage.

flat screen tv

TV or Computer Screens

Modern screens have special coatings that can be damaged by ammonia-based cleaners like Windex. Instead, use a microfiber cloth designed for electronics and a specialized screen cleaner to remove dust and smudges safely.

man cleaning car windshield

Car Windshield

Car windshields are exposed to a variety of elements, including dirt, debris, and bugs. Windex isn’t formulated to handle these tough stains and can leave behind streaks. 

Opt for a glass cleaner designed for automobiles for clearer visibility, blue medical rags (which you can buy in bulk) or newspaper to dry windshields without streaking.

man cleaning windows

Home Windows

Using Windex on your home windows might seem like a convenient choice, but it can leave residue behind and actually attract more dust. 

Instead invest in a squeegee and Dawn dish soap to clean windows.   Start at the top and work your way down, using vertical or horizontal swoops.  And remember to clean the blade with a cloth after each swoop.

kitchen with granite countertop

Granite or Marble

 Granite and marble countertops are elegant and durable, but they require gentle care. Windex’s chemicals can break down the sealant on these surfaces, leaving them vulnerable to stains and damage. Use a pH-balanced stone cleaner to preserve their beauty.

Laminate Countertop or Glass Top Stove

Both laminate countertops and glass top stoves are prone to scratching and damage from abrasive cleaners. Windex can be too harsh and cause these surfaces to lose their shine or become scratched. Opt for a gentle cleaner made for these specific materials.


 Copper items, such as pots and decorative pieces, can tarnish over time. While Windex might seem like a quick solution, it’s not effective at removing tarnish. Instead, use a copper cleaner to restore the shine without causing damage

In conclusion, while Windex is a versatile and effective glass cleaner, it’s essential to use it on the right surfaces to avoid potential damage and disappointment. 

By choosing the appropriate cleaners for each material, you can maintain the beauty and functionality of your belongings for years to come. 

Ann-Marie is a real estate agent in the Greater Ocala, Florida area with over 2 decades in the business. She is a veteran of the United States Air Force and her clients know her as a go-getter and pro-active agent specializing in the luxury market.

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